Zeekr: Another Chinese electric car brand coming to Australia this year - SUV VEHICLE

Zeekr: Another Chinese electric car brand coming to Australia this year


The next electric-car brand to come to Australia is Zeekr – owned by the same Chinese conglomerate as Volvo and Polestar – with a people mover and compact SUV.

A new Chinese electric-car brand is due in Australian showrooms by the end of this year with a luxury people mover promising up to 800km of driving range – and a small SUV similar to a Volvo XC40 or BMW iX1.

Zeekr is a new marque from Geely, the Chinese car giant which owns Volvo, its electric-car spin-off Polestar, British sports-car specialist Lotus, and several other brands.

It is due to launch in Australia in the second half of 2024 with two models – the Zeekr 009 electric people mover and Zeekr X electric small SUV.

Prices are yet to be announced – and many details of the Zeekr roll-out, including how its vehicles will be sold in Australia, are yet to be revealed.

In Germany the cheapest Zeekr X is the same price as a base Tesla Model Y – which starts from about $65,000 in Australia – while in China the Zeekr 009 is priced from $AU105,000 to $AU125,000.

Zeekr began selling cars in China in 2021 – with the Zeekr 001, a large hatchback – but has begun expanding its global reach to Europe, South-East Asia, and soon Australia.

Both Zeekr models destined for Australia share their underpinnings – a Geely-designed electric-car platform known as the Sustainable Experience Architecture (SEA) – with the imminent Volvo EX30 electric city SUV.

The Zeekr 009 is an electric people mover even larger than a petrol or diesel Kia Carnival, with six nappa leather-trimmed seats, up to 822km of claimed driving range, and a big 15-inch infotainment screen.

In China it is offered with 116kWh and 140kWh battery packs, good for up to 702km and 822km of claimed driving range respectively in lenient Chinese testing.

Both models are available with dual electric motors and all-wheel drive, for outputs of 405kW and 686Nm – more than every Tesla on sale in Australia – which can send the 2.8-tonne people mover from zero to 100km/h in 4.5 seconds.

Meanwhile the Zeekr X measures 4450mm long and 1836mm wide – similar to a Volvo XC40 Recharge or BYD Atto 3 – with five seats.

It is powered by a 66kWh battery matched with a single 200kW/343Nm rear electric motor, or dual electric motors (one front, one rear) developing 315kW and 543Nm combined.

Zeekr claims 500-560km of claimed driving range in Chinese testing – or 425-445km of European WLTP range – plus 0-100km/h times of 5.6 seconds for the rear-wheel drive, or 3.8 seconds for the all-wheel drive.

The Chinese car maker has begun building a presence in Australia, recruiting top executives – including head of marketing Andrew Haurissa, who as marketing director helped re-establish fellow Chinese car brand Chery locally last year.


Alex Misoyannis

Alex Misoyannis has been writing about cars since 2017, when he started his own website, Redline. He contributed for Drive in 2018, before joining CarAdvice in 2019, becoming a regular contributing journalist within the news team in 2020.

Cars have played a central role throughout Alex’s life, from flicking through car magazines at a young age, to growing up around performance vehicles in a car-loving family.

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